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Location: MInneapolis, Minnesota, United States

I am now a simple Grandpa who's life is made richer as each grandchild is born. My wife and I have raised five children and the 30 year love labor of raising them has begun to yield sweet fruit..... And then there are fruits of 30 years in ministry ... I am a satisfied old man full of the joy of the Lord.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

"Emergent" Church Discards Doctrine

Thanks to Stuff Out Loud blog for exposing more dangerous "emergent" church thinking. He speaks of how many of these churches discard doctrinal statements because "Jesus didn't have one, they are linguistic idolatry and they exclude others"

Of course they exclude others! Hindu, etc. doctrine just won't cut it in the kingdom of God. But I do believe they almost become idolatry for some people. The Calvinism / Armenism debate is a good example. Why can't people just say, "I don't know?" And I must say that Jesus most certainly did have doctrine. It can be summed up as, "Jesus Christ is Lord."

Of course, Bethel college and seminary is deeply involved in this sort of thinking and give support to the emergent viewpoint. Things are shaking and foundations are being tested there by the Living God as I am writing this.

"If the foundations be destroyed, what will the righteous do?"

Thanks to Stuff Out Loud for this post.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think pentecostal (lower case ‘p’) Christianity needs more focus on orthodoxy. And some of the rest of Evangelical Christianity needs to loosened up from it. Linguistic idolatry is a pretty good way to say it. Although, most of Protestant Christianity is on the complete other side of the road from the linguistically-focused doctrine-idolatry ditch.

Doesn’t the debate itself even bring out the more important issues of life and truth. Debate is not acceptable in itself. *Within* the Church how can some degree of apologetics not be necessary? If the Calvinism issue is a debate rather than apologetic material, so be it.

We *can* know that Calvinism is right. The major misleading thing seems to have been that people think TULIP is Calvinism. (And by the way, I don’t like the term Calvinism, I prefer Reformed Theology, but so be it, people are used to the less accurate.) TULIP was originally a response to heresy and formulated as such. Calvinism is almost certainly linguistic idolatry for a lot of Calvinists. The question for me has been: “What does it matter?”. We can’t understand all of how his knowledge and will play-out in detail. Understanding comes by faith. Often Calvinists treat the pursuit of the understanding as the pursuit of faith. It is secondary or tertiary to doctrine that gets someone saved. If eschatology is tertiary then Calvinism is secondary. So it makes sense that godly, excellent evangelists can be quite Arminian and one might not even know it: Ray Comfort, for example. What does it matter? It glorifies God to magnify him. To believe the basics, being careful of the minutia, is possible and called for, and properly orders other views and other doctrines. The ostensible ditchs from my perspective are to get caught-up in understanding in minutia and thereby avoid two things: live the out-spring and command of evangelism, and allow power to pervade using form to guide power not quench it.

I want to prove my tangent, but it is a tangent so, "so be it".

12:16 PM, May 13, 2006  

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